Based out of the main field office in Honolulu, ATF Agents lend their expertise and resources to investigate serious crimes and support local law enforcement efforts. This has recently included firearms violations, robberies, and an investigation into the April 2011 Waikele fireworks explosion that left five workers dead.
ATF Agents take advantage of a strong federal intelligence network that they combine with a solid understanding of local conditions on the ground. This is due, in large part, to the fact that they work in close cooperation with state and city law enforcement.
Last year ATF Agents in Hawaii confiscated 210 firearms statewide from the following places:
- Lihue – 73
- Honolulu – 33
- Waianae – 17
- Hilo and Kalaheo – 11 each
- Kailua Kona – 9
ATF Agent Degree Requirements
Education is one of the most important qualifications for ATF jobs, and determines whether a candidate qualifies for an entry-level job or a higher ranking position. The minimum education requirement states that applicants must have a bachelor’s degree in any subject, OR either of the following:
- Three years of progressively increasing responsibility dealing with law enforcement or criminal investigations
- A combination of education and experience
However if prospective agents have a good academic record and a bachelor’s degree in any of the following subjects they may be eligible for entry at a higher rank:
- Criminal Justice
- Crime Scene Investigation
- Forensic Science
- Political Science
- Police Science
The Application and Training Process
While researching how to become an ATF Agent in Hawaii, candidates will find additional basic eligibility requirements they must be able to meet:
- Being a US citizen
- Having the ability to obtain a top secret clearance
- Being between the ages of 21-36, unless an eligible veteran or federal law enforcement officer
- Having a valid driver’s license
When candidates are ready to apply they can check the USA Jobs website for openings, or sign up to be notified when ATF jobs become vacant. Prospective agents will need to also complete the following along with an application:
- ATF Special Agent Exam
- ATF Special Agent Applicant Assessment Test
- ATF Pre-Employment Physical Task Test
- ATF Special Agent Application Questionnaire
Upon hire, training for ATF careers includes two extensive courses totaling 27 weeks; one in Georgia, a 12-week Criminal Investigators Training Program, and the other a 15-week Special Agent Basic Training course.
What to Expect in Hawaii
Sunshine, forests, and beaches are what most mainlanders think of when they hear the word Hawaii, however residents of the islands are quite aware of the fact that Hawaii is not a place completely free of crime. Hawaii’s ATF agents were recently involved in two high profile criminal cases, one involving a Honolulu man and the other a Kauai man.
The Kauai investigation involved a postal worker who was charged with making false statements and illegally possessing a fully automatic machine gun. Agents were able to uncover the man’s scheme, which involved ordering a firearm by mail using another person’s license, and then intercepting the firearm before it was delivered to the licensee.
In Honolulu, ATF Agents closed in on a man who was wanted for four robberies in which he stole 300 oxycodone pills and thousands of dollars in cash. Working closely with the Honolulu Police Department, a cooperative law enforcement effort resulted in the arrest and conviction of the suspect.